M'sian Shares Manipulative Tactics Of Scam Calls After Losing RM15,000 To 'LHDN Officers'

"It's easy to say just hang up when you're a third party observing."

Cover image via CollaborateMD (Edited by SAYS)

A 24-year-old Malaysian took to social media to share her traumatising experience of getting caught up in a scam call that she was not careful enough to discern

On 21 January, Twitter user Trina shared how she was scammed of RM15,000 after she received a phone call from someone who she thought was an officer from the Inland Revenue Board of Malaysia (LHDN).

She accepted the call from an automated teller after she heard it was a final warning to pay her income tax, not sensing anything amiss.

As she often receives phones calls at work, it did not occur to her that it was not genuine, nor did she realise the call was from a personal phone number.

Trina told SAYS that what happened next was a four-hour long ordeal that left her panicked and terrified

"I was not able to think straight because it was a really high pressure situation for me," she said, adding that she was all alone in her car when the call happened.

Looking back, Trina said she could not believe that she bought the whole story from when the 'LHDN officer' accused her of not paying tax for a company registered under her name and identification card (IC) number.

"It's easy to say just hang up when you're a third party observing but it's a whole different ballgame when you're experiencing it yourself."

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via CarGurus

Throughout the call, she was transferred between several people - all pretending to be government figures - to clear her name of the fake offence

According to her account, they all had detailed scripts and specific roles used to made her think that they were either going to help her or apprehend her for the crime she did not commit.

While one of the officers comforted her, another yelled at her aggressively.

"They played the game so well for four hours that they really made me believe that I was a suspect in this investigation," she told SAYS.

"Even after the call ended, I was in so much shock and couldn't stop crying."

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via Creative Shory

She found herself giving them details such as her bank account number, the amount she had inside, her online banking details, and even whether she was paying for insurance

After the incident, Trina acknowledged that it was her overwhelming fear of authority that guided her decisions through the call.

"I was kind of suspicious about giving away important bank account details over the phone, but I reasoned that they were the police that I was talking to and I should cooperate as best as I could with the investigation," she explained.

"I told them I had nothing to hide and all my money is clean."

Eventually, after getting off the call and contacting a criminal lawyer with the impression that she was still going to jail, she finally realised it was a scam

The lawyer asked her to look at her bank accounts immediately, especially after the scammers had told her not to check them for 24 hours because of their 'police investigation'.

It was then that Trina found that that she had lost RM15,000 over five transactions made to the same bank account.

"It was a really emotionally and physically draining experience and I would never want to wish it upon anyone. Hence, this is why I shared my post about it," she told SAYS.

"And it doesn't matter that a lot of people know about these scams, there's always bound to be one or two that have never heard of this, and those are the people that I truly want to reach out to to prevent anything like this from happening again."

Read Trina's full account of the scam here:

Police recently busted a syndicate that had over 37 different sets of scripts pretending to be government officers:

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